Money transfers in foreign currency were always a hassle, until we met Wise. A relative abroad, buying something from another country, paying a holiday upfront or maybe even living abroad yourself (our case, read our older article on this subject in Turkish here): There is a good chance that you have ran into the issues involved in sending money in another currency. Traditional banks are slow, charge high fees, and have limited means of funding the transaction: they want you to use their bank exclusively after all, scooping up a generous fee for the transaction.
Luckily, this problem has largely been solved for the last few years by a company called Wise (formerly Transferwise). It provides by far the cheapest, fastest and most convenient money transfer solution in the market.
What is Wise?
Wise is a money transfer application developed by two Estonian developers living in England as a solution to the international money transfer – and foreign currency – problem. They have both a website and application which allows you to create an account, create the transfer, see the current exchange rate, and finalise the payment and transfer. For an ordinary computer user to become a member and perform the first transaction, it takes a total of 5 to 10 minutes in total at no cost. That’s what it’s all about: fast, reliable and inexpensive.
How you transfer money with Wise?
- Step 1: Creating an Account:
First, you need to create an account by going to Wise.com. Signing up is straight forward and will take no more than a few minutes.
If you become a member by clicking this link, you can transfer the first 500 Euro/500 USD free of charge.
- Step 2: Setting up the transaction:
Here you select the amount you want to send, the currency in which the payment will be made and the foreign currency in which it will be sent to the recipient, and the site automatically converts the amount to the current exchange rate applicable and indicates on the page when the money will be credited to the recipients account.
- Step 3: Enter the recipient’s information:
In this step the application will ask if you want to to send the money to yourself or to someone else’s account. If you are going to send it to yourself, you only need to enter your own IBAN. If you are going to send it to someone else, you must also enter their e-mail address, name and surname.
- Step 4: Choosing the payment method:
Wise accepts the following payment methods at the time of writing, depending on the country you live in and the device used:
– Apple pay (mobile, iphone)
– Google pay (mobile, android)
– Debit card
– Credit card
– Manual wire transfer
– Using a wise account
The steps above are equally applicable to the process on the app, or the browser version. After performing all these steps, a confirmation notification appears with a timeline of how your transfer will proceed. You will receive email and/or push notifications when the money is in transit, and when the transfer has been completed.
Is Wise safe to use?
Wise is using security systems on par with the ones you are expecting from a regular bank. As Wise is just the middle-man, they are not vulnerable to hacks and even if someone would be in the possession of your password, they wont be able to access your money. However, as always be vigilant for malicious websites and always take care of your passwords.
Can I use Wise to transfer money in my own currency?
Depending on your country, this is possible. USD to USD is not a problem with fees as low as 0.20USD, and same applies to EUR to EUR transactions. It is worth to note though, that in some cases transfers in your own currency and/or within your own country, are potentially free of charge with your own bank as opposed to foreign currency transactions. Wise will always charge commission for their services.
What does it cost to use Wise?
Wise charges a low commission based on two variables: the amount sent and the type of transfer chosen. You will have the choice between several types of transfers (cheaper, slower or faster at a higher fee), depending on your payment method and country. In our comparison (and being a Wise user for more than 5 years), Wise is faster and significantly cheaper than our bank in all cases. Wise’s commission system is incredibly transparant and all details and variables can be checked and adjusted before making the transfer: no surprises.
What exchange rate does Wise use for foreign currency transactions?
Wise generally constantly monitors the foreign exchange rates and guarantees their rates for an amount of hours. They have a transparant continuously updated system (scroll down on their main page) where they are monitoring the rates for you to check, and they are constantly in the top 3 (mostly numberr 1) of providers with the best rates.
If you become a member by clicking this link, you can make the transfer up to the first 500 Euro free of charge.
How long does it take for my transfer with Wise to be credited to the recipients’ account?
Transfers made will be transferred to the recipient’s account from a few minutes to 4 days depending on the country and payment method selected.
Is Wise available in my country?
Wise is active in more than 200 countries, and most likely yours is included. Head to their website to see the possibilities in your country.
Is is possible to use Wise for my business transactions?
Absolutely yes. Wise has many advanced options for businesses to transfer money fast and cheap to your partners, clients or suppliers abroad. Head to their website and click the “business” tab to get a full overview off the options aswell as pricing.
Other things to know about Wise:
- With TransferWise, you can also transfer from your account abroad to your own account in your country.
- You can reach customer services from their website, by calling +44 203 6950 999, by sending an e-mail to email@example.com and firstname.lastname@example.org.
- The maximum transfer limit varies by currency and by exchange rate. It is best to check their website for the most recent rates.
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